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Lyon looks to protect old Malibu

Ashleigh Fryer, Senior Editor
1:03 pm PDT March 10, 2014

Malibu is in City Council candidate Andy Lyon’s blood.

As a realtor and third generation Malibuite, Lyon now sells the same houses in the Malibu Colony that his grandfather “sold for $2,500 in the 1930s.” 

The remnants of the Malibu that existed for his grandfather, his father and himself — the “paradise” that he enjoyed throughout his youth — is what Lyon hopes to protect if elected this April in his second consecutive run for a City Council seat.

“Cross Creek, the Civic Center area; that was my whole area,” Lyon said. “I grew up there, biking, surfing, skating around. That’s where the Little League fields were, that was the center of town. You saw people there, every day, that you knew.”

Although Lyon has been engaged in the community his entire life, beginning with the Evening Outlook paper route he inherited from his brother at the age of 8 and continuing with the multiple jobs he held at iconic Malibu places like Alice’s Restaurant and the Colony Coffee Shop, it wasn’t until the controversial Malibu Lagoon restoration project in 2011 that Lyon became more vocal in what he saw as his defense of his hometown.

“What they were doing was affecting how the water and the sand goes out,” Lyon said. “That was my wave. That was my spot.

“It was basically one of those things that made me feel like [the City] wasn’t standing up for the center of town.”  

Since then, Lyon has used his voice to oppose the City’s plans for the installation of a wastewater treatment facility in the Civic Center area, a situation which he feels should be subjected to more scrutiny instead of simple compliance with State protocol. 

“People have no idea where the wastewater treatment facility is going,” Lyon said. “Nobody knows what they’re doing with the water in the center of town.

“It’s going right next to Webster and right next to a storm drain that leads right under the highway, right under Malibu Road and right onto the beach. So when there’s a power failure and there’s a problem, they’re going to be dumping raw sewage right onto the beach.”

Lyon feels that with his platform, which he believes has only gotten stronger the second time around, he will be lending his voice to the community members that have felt disconnected to the current power structure in place at City Hall.  

“If you want to get another bathroom in your house, forget it. But if you want to go down there and put in a shopping center, it’s easier,” Lyon said in regard to future development in the Civic Center area. “[The City] is so easy to bend to the developers; they roll out the red carpet for these guys. If they get to keep going with what they’re doing right now, it’ll be over. It’ll never look the same down there again.”

Lyon hopes, if elected, to install some of the foresight that he feels was lacking in the development plan at the Cross Creek shopping center. He believes that more concrete studies are needed of traffic patterns and that the potential stress that further development might place on the aging infrastructure of the city needs to strongly considered.  

“You can’t get down there, even on a winter weekend, because they’ve screwed up the whole traffic pattern by Cross Creek,” Lyon said. “It shouldn’t just be the vision of 10 property owners deciding what they want there. But they don’t have to live there. If that’s the case then it’ll just be another Spanish-style, tiled shopping center. That’s not Malibu.”